What Qualifies a Celebrity to Advertise a Medical Treatment?

Martha Stewart, Michael Phelps, Jeff Bridges, Pink, every late-night talk show host, and so many more celebrities have lined up to promote the COVID-19 vaccine and its boosters. Some, like Phelps and Pink, were clearly marked as paid promotions on social media, others were not—although it is safe to assume they weren’t working for free.

Take James Corden and Ariana Grande, who did a three-minute cringeworthy musical number to promote the vaccine on “The Late Late Show.” Or recall Stephen Colbert’s incredibly painful “Vax-Scene” sketch on “The Late Show,” or the time Anthony Fauci showed up to get his booster. No one in corporate media would devote that kind of time or waste a significant chunk of a show on a product without taking a payout directly or indirectly from a company.

Recall, too, all of the major media programs “brought to you by Pfizer” in a great video The Daily Caller produced a year ago. You can expect with massive profits, the advertising spending of that company, as well as other COVID vaccine-producing companies, has only grown.

When major television and news programs—and many celebrities—likely have been paid for by Big Pharma, to whom should Americans have turned for an honest assessment of information regarding major medical decisions?

The answer, of course, is none of them

Even before the vaccine was released the media would bash then-President Trump for his COVID updates at White House press briefings. There, Trump would speculate about different potential medical treatments that were floated to him by Drs. Fauci and Birx as well the rest of the COVID task force. Each time Trump would discuss a potential solution, it was shot down. Members of the corporate media would slam him for preposterous ideas—many times mocking him for having no medical experience—but then going on to bring in their own (similarly unqualified) advocates to assert their own, different speculations.

When President Trump announced that a vaccine was on the way through his “Operation Warp Speed,” many left-leaning celebrities, members of the corporate media, and Democratic politicians—including then-candidate Kamala Harris—said they would question its viability. But that changed once Trump left office.

Following Trump’s departure, it was full-speed ahead on the vaccine—and all those who were previously skeptical seemed to change their opinions overnight. Everyone on the Left suddenly loved and believed in the work that had been accomplished by drug companies before the Biden era—the same work they once questioned—because it had become a political winner for them. And nearly everyone on the Left went along with them.

What gave celebrities more expertise than Trump? Leftists who themselves never attended medical school and who once mocked the president for “not being a doctor” suddenly became experts on the subject. And no one questioned them.

At the same time, as the Twitter files show, actual doctors and scientists who had opinions other than “everyone go take the vaccine” were banished from social media platforms even though they were speaking from an expert point of view. 

So why aren’t celebrities being questioned for their promotion of this medical treatment—especially when it clearly states on their social media profiles that they were sponsored by big pharma? Furthermore, why aren’t major corporate media institutions questioned for their promotion of the same medical treatment when they also are openly sponsored by billion-dollar drug companies?  

Where did Michael Phelps, Pink, Stephen Colbert, Ariana Grande, and James Corden receive their medical degrees? More importantly, if someone was influenced to take a medical treatment by their advertising and suffered adverse effects, are they liable for their product endorsements?

One of the greatest failures of Trump’s Operation Warp Speed was that it granted drug companies immunity from damages caused by their new products. But should this immunity cover the celebrities and media organizations who took advertising money to promote those products—especially when sudden adult death syndrome is becoming more and more common?

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About Tim Young

Tim Young is the media and culture critic for American Greatness.

Photo: Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images

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